SAD is more than just sadness

Miranda Lyons, Cartoonist/ Reporter

With the frigid weather of winter setting in, so does the increased risk as a type of depression known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) that many adults and teens will suffer from each winter.

In the winter months the cold weather, increased overcast skies, and shorter daylight hours lessen the amount of natural vitamin D intake from the sun that the body needs and can cause depression as a result.

Most people naturally experience occasional days when they feel less energized and more negative than usual. For people with SAD and any other type of depression, these feelings occur every day and are more intense than what is considered normal.

The depression itself can not only affect a person’s ability to enjoy things, but affect a person’s ability to function academically also, which can be destructive in any case.

“If a person is finding themselves depressed, it’s very hard for them to put their life in order. So they find themselves putting things off because they just don’t feel like it or they might feel very overwhelmed. So it’s really easy to find themselves getting behind,” school nurse Kim Deal said.

According to Deal, despite the negative symptoms, SAD and depression can be treated and managed by acknowledging the problem, reaching out for help, and going to the doctor.

“The best thing you can do is be self-aware. Think to yourself, do I really have anything going on that’s making me sad or is it just an overall blue feeling? If it’s just that overall blue feeling, then you should really consider going to a doctor to get some help,” Deal said.